Who Performs the Procedure?
The interventional catheterization is performed only after careful cardiac evaluation by a pediatric cardiologist; therefore, only a pediatric cardiologist can order this procedure.
The request is then reviewed by the cardiologists who specialize in interventional techniques to evaluate the appropriateness of the procedure. Only then will your child be scheduled for the interventional catheterization.
The interventional cardiologist will perform the procedure along with the help of an assistant who is a pediatric cardiology fellow (trainee), nurses and radiology technicians.
Where Is the Cardiac Catheterization Treatment Performed?
The catheterization is performed in the Cardiac Catheterization Suite of the Heart Institute at Cincinnati Children's.
When and How Often Is the Treatment Performed?
The timing of the procedure depends on the type of heart problem your child has. Most procedures need only to be performed once, but some may need a second procedure later in the child's life.
Is Cardiac Catheterization Painful?
A child is given sedation before the procedure. For some procedures, general anesthesia may be recommended.
Generally, the only pain the child may feel is the injection of local anesthetic (similar to novocaine given by the dentist) that is used to numb the area in the groin where the catheters will be inserted.
Intermittent additional sedation is given during the catheterization, as necessary, to keep the child comfortable.
The child may have some bruising in the groin area where the catheters were inserted and may be sore for a couple of days. This generally can be treated with acetaminophen (such as Tylenol).
Is Cardiac Catheterization Risky?
The procedures are generally low risk, with incidence of minor complications under 5 percent. Each type of interventional catheterization procedure has its own unique risks and complications and can be discussed with the doctor performing the catheterization.
What Is the Likelihood of Success?
The likelihood of success of the procedure depends on the type and severity of the heart problem.
Each procedure is individualized to the patient, and its effectiveness can be discussed with your child's cardiologist or one of the specialists in interventional cardiology.